Player Eliesa Katoa

defensivebomb

defensivebomb

Here is an old 2016 clip.


Looks talented. Although the problem I see time and again is big youngsters that dominate junior grades and don't learn field awareness and periphery vision when they are in the lower grades as they get results by going themselves and not passing. Works well when you are the biggest on the field at schoolboy level but that same bag of tricks doesn't work out in FG when you play against men.

So I'll hold off any excitement until I see him developing in FG.
 
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wrighty

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On a serious note, the kid had wheels and was nimble off both feet.
 
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Billy Teets James

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Around 6'2 - 6'3
Around 106 - 110kg

Just saw they are starting to include him in the club promotions. Here are a few photos with him. The real tall guy is Jackson Frei (Prop) Who is around 6'5 -6'6

https://www.warriors.kiwi/news/2019/02/10/vodafone-warriors-visit-mitre-10-stores/
Start of last year. Bit taller than Pompey , Not to much shorter than Frei.
Usual Tongan legs like tree trunks and yet to fill out! Bigger this year too.
20191203 204633
 
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Five&Last

Five&Last

Still confused as to how he made the top 30 for next year without ever having played a ISP game and mostly playing off the bench in Flegg this year. Maybe it was written into his contract he signed in last year that he would join the top 30 after the first year?
 
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tajhay

tajhay

🏉
Still confused as to how he made the top 30 for next year without ever having played a ISP game and mostly playing off the bench in Flegg this year. Maybe it was written into his contract he signed in last year that he would join the top 30 after the first year?
Maybe that happens when they can't sign anyone willing to play for this club/coach, so promoting from within becomes the only option.
 
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Rick O'Shay

Rick O'Shay

Maybe that happens when they can't sign anyone willing to play for this club/coach, so promoting from within becomes the only option.

In my view you are absolutely right TJ. Internal development is our only option until we we can get a regular spot in the top 8. The cattle are out there, just a matter of identifying them and developing them. Might take a while unless we are prepared to throw a bunch of youngsters into the fire and see what transpires (that's what I'd do)
 
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Swanley

Swanley

In my view you are absolutely right TJ. Internal development is our only option until we we can get a regular spot in the top 8. The cattle are out there, just a matter of identifying them and developing them. Might take a while unless we are prepared to throw a bunch of youngsters into the fire and see what transpires (that's what I'd do)
Agree, if your good enough, your old enough...

We do not seem to play enough young blokes, our development must be really really bad...
 
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Horriors2013

Horriors2013

Looks talented. Although the problem I see time and again is big youngsters that dominate junior grades and don't learn field awareness and periphery vision when they are in the lower grades as they get results by going themselves and not passing. Works well when you are the biggest on the field at schoolboy level but that same bag of tricks doesn't work out in FG when you play against men.

So I'll hold off any excitement until I see him developing in FG.
He actually looks like he can only get better. Tall, rangy, strong. With some higher level coaching he could flourish.
 
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Horriors2013

Horriors2013

Agree, if your good enough, your old enough...

We do not seem to play enough young blokes, our development must be really really bad...
Well basically our youngins don't have good enough basic skill level to allow too many in the team at once. Hence our biggest thrashings.
 
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Horriors2013

Horriors2013

Better send him to a different coach then.
I think if he learns how to offload in traffic he'll be a weapon. He clearly can dent the line. Hopefully he can level up his upper body strength to compete against adults.
 
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bangbros18

bangbros18

I wonder how good his defence is? If he can tackle then amen! The rest will come.
 
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WellingtonOrca

WellingtonOrca


NRL: Introducing Eliesa Katoa, the Warriors' new secret weapon

Going into this year's NRL season, it wasn't a case if Eliesa Katoa would make his NRL debut, but when.

However, for the 20-year-old to make his first appearance for the Warriors in the opening game of the season, after playing just nine games of league in his life is beyond everybody's expectations.

Katoa has been given the No 16 jersey for the Warriors' game against the Knights in Newcastle on Saturday afternoon and while to outsiders it may be a surprise that he's in the team already, talk to anyone at the club and they'll tell you he's earned his spot.

"He's wanting to learn, his intent when he trains," Warriors coach Stephen Kearney said of Katoa.

"He's a big lad, he's very athletic for a big man but also he has a real capacity to want to learn.

"He's pretty raw in the game of rugby league but you wouldn't think so and that's a credit to him because he's taken on all the information the coaches are giving him.

"I've just been super-impressed, without putting any pressure on the kid.

"I've seen a few kids and he's a good one."

Katoa trained the house down over the preseason, sometimes showing up more experienced players with his determination to keep pushing himself and while he may be raw, at 193cm tall and 110kg, he packs a punch that will have other NRL clubs wondering where this kid came from.

Katoa is destined to make a big impression in league, but it's still a sport he's getting to grips with and he never expected to have a career in it.

"I finished school two years ago, was straight into the club and the thing for me was to learn the game," Katoa said of his conversion to league.

"Growing up I was a rugby player and never thought I'd play league in my life, but things happened.

"So last year was more about learning the game."

Katoa picked up a shoulder injury last year and needed an operation, so he only got to play seven games for the under 20s team. He used that time to understand league as much as he could.

But he said he wasn't happy with how much he progressed and was determined to make big strides during the preseason.

"Last year was about learning the game for me and after the season I said to myself did I have a good season?" He said.

"There were a few things that I could have done better and that's what motivated me.

"I'd look at the other boys and think that if they can do it, so can I. So I decided that from the start of the preseason, with everything I do, I'll do it better than before."

Katoa says the basics are similar, comparing playing in the back row of rugby, to the second row in league and it all still comes down to going hard.

"In rugby, you just get the ball and run and that's the same in league," he said.

"But when I started playing league there were some little technical things that I didn't think it was important to learn about, like how to wrestle on the ground and stuff like that.

"So now I know what you've got to do in league. Like I play in the second row in league and on the edge I've got to run hard and tackle hard, that's my key job."

Katoa, who lived in Tonga until he was 17, was given a scholarship by Tamaki College and played No 8 or blindside flanker there before he was snapped up by the Warriors and he jumped at the chance to be a professional athlete.

"The Warriors offered me a contract and like I said, I never imagined that I'd play league, even when I came to Tamaki, I was just playing rugby.

"In my last game, some of the coaches from the Warriors came up to me and said they wanted to offer me something.

"I said I'd take it, because that's why I'm here, I want to help my family and whatever it takes to help them, I'll do."

Katoa's father passed away in 2011, but his mother and other family members remain in Tonga and no doubt it will be a proud moment for all of them to see him make his NRL debut this weekend.
 
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Woofa

Woofa

Still confused as to how he made the top 30 for next year without ever having played a ISP game and mostly playing off the bench in Flegg this year. Maybe it was written into his contract he signed in last year that he would join the top 30 after the first year?

1 thing I don't like about the NRL is this top 30.. why is this needed really.. Happy to keep top 30 for salary cap, but you should be able to use any of the 60 within the club or even below. It seems stupid to me.
 
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Pricey

1 thing I don't like about the NRL is this top 30.. why is this needed really.. Happy to keep top 30 for salary cap, but you should be able to use any of the 60 within the club or even below. It seems stupid to me.

Then Clubs like the Roosters would have three or four stacked teams to pick their top 13 from each week...
 
eudebrito

eudebrito

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Contributor
Then Clubs like the Roosters would have three or four stacked teams to pick their top 13 from each week...

Its also to protect players from their club having buyers remorse with their contract and playing younger, cheaper players ahead of them to make them quit.

Coaches can always sideline players to an extent (name them 19th man every week) but when injury comes up, you can’t just skip over the healthy players already on your books, without dispensation.
 
Fonzies Tram Line

Fonzies Tram Line


NRL: Introducing Eliesa Katoa, the Warriors' new secret weapon

Going into this year's NRL season, it wasn't a case if Eliesa Katoa would make his NRL debut, but when.

However, for the 20-year-old to make his first appearance for the Warriors in the opening game of the season, after playing just nine games of league in his life is beyond everybody's expectations.

Katoa has been given the No 16 jersey for the Warriors' game against the Knights in Newcastle on Saturday afternoon and while to outsiders it may be a surprise that he's in the team already, talk to anyone at the club and they'll tell you he's earned his spot.

"He's wanting to learn, his intent when he trains," Warriors coach Stephen Kearney said of Katoa.

"He's a big lad, he's very athletic for a big man but also he has a real capacity to want to learn.

"He's pretty raw in the game of rugby league but you wouldn't think so and that's a credit to him because he's taken on all the information the coaches are giving him.

"I've just been super-impressed, without putting any pressure on the kid.

"I've seen a few kids and he's a good one."

Katoa trained the house down over the preseason, sometimes showing up more experienced players with his determination to keep pushing himself and while he may be raw, at 193cm tall and 110kg, he packs a punch that will have other NRL clubs wondering where this kid came from.

Katoa is destined to make a big impression in league, but it's still a sport he's getting to grips with and he never expected to have a career in it.

"I finished school two years ago, was straight into the club and the thing for me was to learn the game," Katoa said of his conversion to league.

"Growing up I was a rugby player and never thought I'd play league in my life, but things happened.

"So last year was more about learning the game."

Katoa picked up a shoulder injury last year and needed an operation, so he only got to play seven games for the under 20s team. He used that time to understand league as much as he could.

But he said he wasn't happy with how much he progressed and was determined to make big strides during the preseason.

"Last year was about learning the game for me and after the season I said to myself did I have a good season?" He said.

"There were a few things that I could have done better and that's what motivated me.

"I'd look at the other boys and think that if they can do it, so can I. So I decided that from the start of the preseason, with everything I do, I'll do it better than before."

Katoa says the basics are similar, comparing playing in the back row of rugby, to the second row in league and it all still comes down to going hard.

"In rugby, you just get the ball and run and that's the same in league," he said.

"But when I started playing league there were some little technical things that I didn't think it was important to learn about, like how to wrestle on the ground and stuff like that.

"So now I know what you've got to do in league. Like I play in the second row in league and on the edge I've got to run hard and tackle hard, that's my key job."

Katoa, who lived in Tonga until he was 17, was given a scholarship by Tamaki College and played No 8 or blindside flanker there before he was snapped up by the Warriors and he jumped at the chance to be a professional athlete.

"The Warriors offered me a contract and like I said, I never imagined that I'd play league, even when I came to Tamaki, I was just playing rugby.

"In my last game, some of the coaches from the Warriors came up to me and said they wanted to offer me something.

"I said I'd take it, because that's why I'm here, I want to help my family and whatever it takes to help them, I'll do."

Katoa's father passed away in 2011, but his mother and other family members remain in Tonga and no doubt it will be a proud moment for all of them to see him make his NRL debut this weekend.

I am this guys biggest fan, and he hasn't even played a game of first grade.
 
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brightman

brightman

I am this guys biggest fan, and he hasn't even played a game of first grade.
I know right! His humility reminds me of Ali let alone his potential on the field. Has presence on the field in spades, at least that is what I noticed most from the trials and could imagine Craig Bellamy taking note too..
 
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